Kuerner Farm: Where fact and magic meet

March 30, 2015

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Ever wondered what it would be like to step into a famous work of art?

I did. And it was an experience like no other. In 2014 we took a trip to Kuerner Farm in Chadds Ford, PA, which, thanks to the Wyeth family, is probably one of the most famous farms in the world.

Our guide was none other than Karl J. Kuerner, another famous artist in the Brandywine Valley school, whose family has owned and operated Kuerner Farm for around 80 years.

Taking a tour of the farm was like walking through series of Andrew Wyeth paintings. After all, this farm was one of his favorite subjects. As we went from room to room and from view to view, we got to see what Wyeth saw: the large, dramatic hill across Ring Road, the barn, the spring room, and the views of the landscape through the farmhouse windows.

View Of Hill Farm Grounds Springhouse 2use 

There is something magical about that spring room. It turned out to be one of my favorite photos of the trip.

These artworks (below) were from last year’s exhibit at the National Gallery titled ‘Andrew Wyeth: Looking Out, Looking In’. The collection highlighted Wyeth’s paintings of windows throughout his artistic career. An entire section was devoted to Kuerner Farm, naturally.

Window Cover Wyeth Farm Wyeth Springhouse 

Tours of Kuerner farm are available through the Brandywine River Museum of Art April through November, along with tours of both NC Wyeth's and Andrew Wyeth's studios. Despite the amount of tour groups that come through the property almost every day, this is still an operational farm. 

Karl Jr

Karl J. Kuerner, who was taught by Carolyn Wyeth, has also used his family’s farm as inspiration for his paintings. The barn’s massive interior was a frequent subject for Karl J., and it’s easy to see why. 

Barn Int Barn Rafters Barn Door 

Cats and sheep are fixtures at the farm and they, too, have worked their way into Karl J’s paintings over the years.

Owen W Cats Barn Cats

I’m no expert on farm animal breeds, but I think these are Shetland sheep. The book ‘All in a Day’s Work’ contains a delightful catalogue of Karl J. Kuerner’s art depicting life at this very special place.

Owen W Sheep Sheep Days Work 

Initially conceived as a venue to document some home improvement projects, this blog has since expanded into other pursuits including anything from jewelry to art appreciation to textiles.

Art and art-making have always been an important part of my life. I believe there is therapeutic power in one’s own imagination, and it can be tapped through any kind of beautiful ‘object of meditation’. Whether in the form of music, photos, a good story, or the things only Mother Nature can take credit for, art nurtures our brains and souls. Like spirituality, art may not be necessary for survival but it definitely makes life worth living. Happy imagining!

Laura Soule

Published March 30, 2015